He said they are worried about backlash from players, and that if they do add more characters through DLC, people might think they held back content from the original release.
“I understand that DLC could add a lot to the appeal of Smash Bros.,” said Sakurai, “…however, I think there might be criticism that we are cutting up content to sell characters one by one, or that we are adding things later that should have been there from the start.”
Sakurai also mentions how much work goes into making each character, and how, despite their concerns, they need to carefully weigh both sides before deciding whether to add DLC or not.
So more characters for the new Smash Bros. isn’t out of the question, but it seems kind of crazy that in the current era of games, where everything has DLC, a game perfect for the format won’t have it.
It’s good to see that Sakurai and Nintendo are listening to players, and showing concern for how their actions affect the perception of their company, but there simple answers to this problem circumvent the hordes of angry players. Players don’t get upset with free DLC, so I would think Nintendo is looking at how to sell players more characters without pissing them off.
So far they are off to a good start. Smash Bros for the Wii U comes out this Friday, November 21 and reviews so far have been very positive.